Motivation is a photography blog that discusses the creative aspects of photography. The posts will include thoughts about images and their interpretation, photographers and their work, technique, workflow, my ongoing projects, and perhaps even the occasional off topic rant.

Fallen Leaf

This is the first image that I have processed since reading David DuChemin's Lightroom book that I reviewed in my last post. In doing so, I took a lot of his suggestions to heart. For example, in this image I first asked myself what drew my eye to the scene and used that information to help direct me through the image processing.

Leaf And Wooden Door
Copyright Howard Grill

Here, I was drawn to the way the wood of the door as well as the metal of the rusted hinge had an old and deep wrinkled texture that was similar to that of the leaf. In addition, I liked the way the yellow of the old paint on the door echoed the yellow in the leaf and the way the orange of the rusted hinge echoed the red of the leaf. Finally, I was intrigued that the green paint of the door symbolized the color of the leaf before its turning color and that the yellow paint was coming from underneath the green paint. Lots of echoing and symbolism going on here.

So, based on those thoughts, I knew that I wanted to emphasis the texture of the wood, leaf, and rusted metal in post-processing. I also wanted the colors saturated, though not so much that they appeared unnatural and, since the main point for the viewer's eye to be drawn towards was the leaf, I wanted the saturation of the paint to be somewhat less than that of the leaf.

I also used these thoughts to guide my cropping. Given that I wanted to display the leaf in the setting of the old door and for viewers to compare the inanimate to the living, I left enough of the door in the image so that it became a recognizable portion of it and not simply a backdrop onto which the leaf could be displayed.

Going through these thought processes are quite helpful in directing one's self down a specific route or two as opposed to the endless possibilities that exist when first opening a RAW file.